Review 2005

Karina Westermann

2005 was a year of two halves for me; two halves very much defined by weblogging. I have maintained a weblog for several years now and while it has always been part of my life, 2005 saw the weblog /forming/ my life.

The first half of 2005 was characterised by problems I had with regular readers of my blog. At one point I had to contact the police in order to put an end to unwanted attentions from one of my blog readers. The reader had confused the friendly tone of my blogging with personal messages to him - the entire experience was nasty and taught me valuable lessons about how much you can control how you are being perceived; it underlined how important it is to protect one's personal details online. It also made me reconsider the act of keeping a weblog and why I felt it was important to me.

But if the first half of 2005 had been characterised by weblog-related problems, then the second half proved that there are benefits too. Webloggers tend to form networks. Usually these informal networks shift rapidly as bloggers fall in and out of view, but throughout all my blogging years I have kept in contact with a small handful of fellow bloggers. The network provided great feedback during the problems mentioned above but one person turned out to be a particularly valuable friend. The second half of 2005 saw this friendship turn into something else. Although we both keep our personal lives separate from our weblogs, we never would have met if it had not been for that strange practice of putting words online on a daily basis.

While I continue to view weblogging as an entertaining (if time-consuming) hobby, it has changed my life in 2005. It may have spawned some nasty moments, but eventually weblogging has brought me much (very unexpected) happiness this year.

Karina Westermann writes Bookish

For an introduction and list of contributors to Review 2005, follow this link.

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